Why the fuss about chicken?

by Anne Myers-Wright RD/APD

Posted on Oct 9, 01:31 AM in and . No comments.

Someone told me that I should pretty much start this blog off with a joke.. there are so many and they are so bad! I had to settle for this one:

Q: “why did the chicken have to wash his mouth out with soap”
A: “because of all the fowl language”

Oh dear!

Jokes aside, chicken is such a popular meat, it’s scary. Consumption of chicken in Australia has slowly increased over the years and, as mentioned in my previous blog, we are eating about 45 Kg of the stuff per person each year.

Why is chicken so popular?

I guess there are quite a few reasons:

  • It’s quite versatile- there are SO many chicken recipes about!
  • Usually people don’t have trouble eating it if they need a softer texture (all age groups)
  • It can be cheaper than other meats
  • Some people prefer to reduce red meat consumption for health reasons ( high red meat consumption has been associated with colorectal cancer)

So what has chicken got going for it?

Traditionally, chicken has been favoured because it is a relatively lean meat with a good source of quality protein. I recall, in the past, encouraging people to eat more chicken but instructing them to avoid the chicken skin. With the current moves away from “low fat” diets, chicken skin can probably have a reprieve. If you are after a lean, good quality protein for a low fat diet, however, (skinless) chicken is still your meat. Chicken can, indeed, be very low in total fat, particularly saturated fat. (It is interesting to note that chicken has slightly less monounsaturated fat than grilled fillet steak at the same weight). It is slightly lower in KJ/calories than other meats, (at the same weight), and has around 30g protein per 100g serve (chicken breast, baked). Chicken isn’t just about protein though, it provides essential vitamins and minerals, particularly niacin, vitamin A, vitamin E and magnesium.

I think chicken will be on the menu in Australia for some time now.

Do you have any favourite chicken recipes (or jokes?) please share.


I just thought I should mention that I don’t have any association with the chicken industry. I ws invited to a media day out to see the process from farm to fork and just thought it would be interesting to let everyone know what I found about and to follow up with the nutritional value of chicken :)

Chicken photos courtesy of ACMF

Tags: Chicken, Monounsaturated Fat, Protein, Saturated Fat

About the author

Anne Myers-Wright

Anne Myers-Wright RD/APD

Anne is a Health Professions Council (HPC) registered dietitian (RD), an Accredited Practicing Dietitian (APD- Australia), a fellow of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA), a member of the British Dietetic Association, The Nutrition Society and of The Dietetics Association of Australia.


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